DUBAI, December 10, 2021 (WAM) – The United Arab Emirates were elected to the Council of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) in Category B for the third time in the run-up to the elections after extensive efforts and an intensive election campaign.
Through its pioneering initiatives, the country continues to play an active role in strengthening the national maritime sector while contributing to the growth of the global maritime and logistic industries.
The election results were announced today during the 32nd session of the IMO Assembly in London, which ends on December 15, 2021.
When re-elected, the UAE received international praise for its central role in developing strategies, guidelines and agreements to improve maritime safety, protect the marine environment and make global industry more efficient.
Suhail bin Mohammed Al Mazrouei, Minister for Energy and Infrastructure, expressed his joy on this occasion: “With this achievement, the UAE have confirmed their leading status as the vital maritime center of the world. Our re-election to the Council of The International Maritime Organization (IMO ) has further strengthened our active role in developing the sector and improving maritime safety standards, as well as protecting the marine environment worldwide, for the third year in a row. Through our efforts, we have been ranked as one of the most influential countries in the development of the maritime industry. ”
Al Mazrouei added, âIt is encouraging to see our efforts being recognized internationally. Even after our election in 2017, we have made great strides in the industry locally and focused on meeting regional and global maritime needs in terms of providing the best infrastructure “and first-class services. Our competencies have helped us achieve the status of a major global maritime hub and today our efforts have come to fruition. The sector’s contribution to the country’s GDP is AED 90 billion annually. Our ports handled over 15 million TEU in 2020, and in the same year there were over 25,000 port calls in the UAE. The UAE’s national fleet capacity is 21 million DWT. Our national fleet consisted of 970 ships in 2020. The re-election has further encouraged us to continue working with member states to advance the global maritime sector by achieving the safety and efficiency of maritime transport. ”
The UAE pioneered several global indicators of competition in the maritime sector. The country took 3rd place in the transport services trade and in the Bunker Supply Index. It ranked fifth as a major competitive maritime hub and 13th in the world in the Port Performance and Efficiency Index. When it comes to container handling, the country’s ports are among the top 10 internationally. There are over 27,000 shipping companies in the United Arab Emirates, and the country’s ports are among the world’s front-runners.
Hassan Mohamed Juma Al-Mansoori, Undersecretary of State for Infrastructure and Transport in the United Arab Emirates Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure, said: âThe United Arab Emirates is without a doubt a leader in the maritime world and has contributed immensely to the growth of world trade and shipping while making an important contribution to the industry by taking pioneering steps to protect and safeguard its interests. We have the world’s best infrastructure and technology in our ports. Our strategic location has contributed to its position as the leading hub for maritime trade in the Arab Gulf States, East Africa and the Indian subcontinent. During the COVID-19 pandemic, all ports in the UAE were opened to facilitate sea trade and keep supply chains functioning. It is truly an honor to be re-elected to the Council because of the hard work we and our industrial partners in the country have done. ”
The UAE has contributed to the maritime sector in several ways. It was one of the first IMO member states to appoint and support seafarers as key workers during the Covid-19 pandemic by facilitating crew changes, vaccinating and giving them access to medical care.
In addition, as part of its ongoing efforts to support the sector, the country has also established the United Arab Emirates Unified National Framework for a Single Window and its National Committee that integrates the maritime, air, land and rail sectors. This has further improved trade through a single digital gateway, allowing the country to operate ports in 50 countries.
She also advocates women’s rights in the maritime sector. In this context, the country currently chairs the Arab Women in the Maritime Association (AWIMA), which works with the IMO’s Technical Cooperation Program (ITCP) to help women in the maritime sector achieve the fifth UN Sustainable Development Goal of Gender to achieve equality. It is also one of the founding members of IMOGENder, a network of IMO delegates who advocate gender equality.
Hessa Al Malek, Advisor to the Minister of Maritime Affairs, Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure of the UAE, said: “It is a moment of pride for us to be elected along with other countries that have done great work for the sector. With this win The UAE has demonstrated its active role in strengthening the maritime sector through a number of initiatives that have earned us international recognition and we have been at the forefront of women’s participation in the industry drafting the resolution A.1147 (31) of the IMO Assembly “Preserving the Legacy of the World Ocean Theme for 2019 and Achieving an Accessible Work Environment for Women in the Maritime Sector”, adopted at the thirty-first session of the IMO Assembly in. 2019. All of this has for us led to another milestone. ”
Bright Future The UAE actively contributes to the activities of the IMO through its positive and effective engagement and participation in all work of the Assembly, Council, main technical committees, subcommittees and related working groups.
Mohammed Khamis Al Kaabi, UAE Permanent Representative to the IMO, said: âThrough its membership in the IMO, the UAE will continue to contribute to the development of the global maritime sector. Working with the member states of the IMO, the UAE participated in a proposal to develop the best approach to prudential scoping on Maritime Autonomous Surface Ships (MASS) under the Maritime Safety Committee and Legal Committee.The UAE recently contributed to several changes to the IMO such as the submission of a proposal to increase the membership of the Organization’s Council to 52 instead of 40, in addition to the proposal to extend the Council’s term of office to 4 years, the UAE also contributed to the work of the Legal Affairs Committee by Have submitted a resolution to develop new measures to prevent illegal practices related to the fraudulent registration and registration of ships by preparing a draft resolution on funding and partnership arrangements for an effective and sustainable integrated pro technical cooperation program. Our re-election has increased our confidence and will therefore prompt us to consolidate our efforts to accelerate the growth of the industry. ”
As part of the council, the UAE has contributed to the efforts of the IMO to establish the World Maritime University in Malmo, Sweden since its inception in 1983 through its active membership of the Board of Governors and Executive Committee between 1983 and 1991. In addition, the UAE has participated in national and international forums, which serve to convey and exchange experiences in maritime education and training.